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SLAMMED & POINT OF RETREAT BY COLLEEN HOOVER: MY THOUGHTS

Goodreads Summary: Following the unexpected death of her father, 18-year-old Layken is forced to be the rock for both her mother and younger brother. Outwardly, she appears resilient and tenacious, but inwardly, she’s losing hope.
Enter Will Cooper: The attractive, 21-year-old new neighbor with an intriguing passion for slam poetry and a unique sense of humor. Within days of their introduction, Will and Layken form an intense emotional connection, leaving Layken with a renewed sense of hope.
Not long after an intense, heart-stopping first date, they are slammed to the core when a shocking revelation forces their new relationship to a sudden halt. Daily interactions become impossibly painful as they struggle to find a balance between the feelings that pull them together, and the secret that keeps them apart.

 

 

 

Goodreads Summary: Hardships and heartache brought them together…now it will tear them apart.

Layken and Will have proved their love can get them through anything; until someone from Will’s past re-emerges, leaving Layken questioning the very foundation on which their relationship was built. Will is forced to face the ultimate challenge…how to prove his love for a girl who refuses to stop ‘carving pumpkins.’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Thoughts: 

Every once in a while you come across a novel that your words don’t do justice for. In this case, I’ve found 2…Slammed & Point of Retreat by Colleen Hoover.

A long-winded review would take away from the beauty of this series.

I will say this, both are incredible and heartbreaking and hopeful and poetic. You’ll find yourself laughing, crying and falling in love right along side the characters. You’ll be speechless. You won’t be able to form complete thoughts.

Slammed & Point of Retreat are all consuming. They are magnificent pieces of art in the literary world.

These novels are breathtaking and genuine. It’s not often that I’m so moved and so affected.

I really just don’t know what else to stay. I’m haunted by them and feel like I’ve stumbled upon something so rare and a treasure to be kept for always.

‘Butterflying’ Exquisite!

Also…Colleen managed to combine two of my favorite things, beautiful novels and The Avett Brothers. Bonus!

 

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To check out the ‘Butterflying’ sensational band that’s featured in both Slammed & Point of Retreat: The Avett Brothers

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FAIREST BY CHANDA HAHN: BOOK REVIEW

Goodreads Summary: Mirror, Mirror, on the wall,
Who is the Fairest of them all?

In the sequel to UnEnchanted, Mina Grime discovers that all is not fair when it comes to the Fae and their tales, especially when they don’t all play by the rules. Barely surviving the Story’s first fairy tale quest, Mina still has hundreds to go before she can end the curse on her family. But a new player arises to challenge Mina while new rules revamp the game she has just barely begun to understand.
All the while, people are mysteriously disappearing, including Jared, whom Mina must finally determine to be friend or foe. And with the loss of her greatest weapon, Mina must try to outwit a deadly hunter. Can Mina survive the most difficult quest yet while protecting those she loves from falling victim to one of the lethal tales of all? Or will she become a pawn when she strikes a bargain with the Queen of Fae?

Review: Chanda Hahn has done it again! In her sequel to UnEnchanted, she created a world full of thrilling moments, heartbreaking loss, breathtaking glimpses at love and a perfect ending that will leave readers anxiously awaiting the release of book three in the An Unfortunate Fairy Tale series!   

I can’t get over how much I enjoyed Fairest! As a fan of Chanda Hahn, I’m not surprised that I enjoyed the novel. I am, however,  surprised that I liked it more than UnEnchanted.

If the ending of UnEnchated broke my heart, the beginning of Fairest completely shattered it. I wanted so much for Mina to find the happiness and peace she deserved. I wanted her to have something or someone to hold. As I continued to read, shattered heart and all, I began to see that maybe JUST maybe she is on track for a happily ever after, after all. But, it’s going to be on her terms!

Mina is a remarkably strong heroine. There were times when she questioned her strength, but it was there all along. She just had to find it and trust those who were desperately trying to help her. The final scenes in the book proved that she found her strength and something much more.

I found it so powerful that even with a shared kiss between Mina and Brody the passion was stronger in every moment between her and Jared. Passion doesn’t necessarily mean lovely feelings and rainbows. There were times where Mina flat out couldn’t stand Jared. She ached for his honesty and was repeatedly let down. Then, there were brief moments when he let her in and it sent my heart soaring. Regardless of what type of passion existed between the two, it was there and it was thrilling.

Without giving away too much, I loved the twists and turns in Fairest. “The Story” and other things lurking in the shadows did their best at playing Mina’s emotions against her and in turn, changed the view of Mina always being the victim.

It doesn’t get any better than Fairest! Like Mina said, “the lines of battle have been drawn.” I can’t wait to read what Chanda has in store for readers in book three!

 

If you haven’t already, pick up your copy of Fairest TODAY!

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Chanda is beyond words! She’s an incredibly gifted author and storyteller. Want more from her? Of course you do!

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Don’t forget to check out other releases by Chanda Hahn.

 

Amazon (Kindle Edition)

Amazon (Paperback)

Barnes & Noble

iBooks

 

 

 

 

 

 

Amazon (Kindle Edition)

Barnes & Noble

iBooks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be on the lookout for book three in Chanda’s An Unfortunate Fairy Tale series to be released in the Winter and the sequel to The Iron Butterfly, The Steele Wolf, this Fall!

 

 

 

 

LOCK AND KEY BY SARAH DESSEN: BOOK REVIEW

Goodreads Summary: Ruby, where is your mother?

Ruby knows that the game is up. For the past few months, she’s been on her own in the yellow house, managing somehow, knowing that her mother will probably never return.

That’s how she comes to live with Cora, the sister she hasn’t seen in ten years, and Cora’s husband Jamie, whose down-to-earth demeanor makes it hard for Ruby to believe he founded the most popular networking Web site around. A luxurious house, fancy private school, a new wardrobe, the promise of college and a future; it’s a dream come true. So why is Ruby such a reluctant Cinderella, wary and defensive? And why is Nate, the genial boy next door with some secrets of his own, unable to accept the help that Ruby is just learning to give?

Best-selling author Sarah Dessen explores the heart of a gutsy, complex girl dealing with unforeseen circumstances and learning to trust again.

Review: When I first started Lock and Key, I was strangely unhappy with the story. I adore Sarah Dessen and I think she’s immensely talented. At about 60 pages in I was ready to put it down and move on. I’m glad I didn’t! Lock and Key turned out to be a great read. I couldn’t out it down!

At the start, I had a hard time connecting with Ruby. There were a few things she did in the beginning that really put me off. By then end, I felt a closeness to her that I wasn’t expecting. She really is a likeable and wonderful character. She’s a real girl with real problems and that made her all the more enjoyable to me. Ruby has more strength than most, sometimes at a fault.

Nate was such a mystery. It doesn’t get much better than having a cute and friendly boy next door. If I hadn’t read the synopsis, I would have thought there wasn’t much more to him. Just a nice, good looking guy that would help Ruby find her way. When his issues were brought to the surface I was really taken aback. I was also hopeful.

Cora and Jamie are perfect counterpoints to Ruby. Cora always took care of Ruby growing up. She’s protected her from their mother’s episodes and did everything in her power to make sure Ruby was going to be OK. Cora’s protectiveness and love for Ruby was still so evident even after they went a decade with no contact. Jamie, Cora’s husband, was such a positive and uplifting character. He brought a lightness and hopefulness to the story.

All around, I really enjoyed Lock and Key! I’m so glad I kept reading after not having a connection with the beginning. It’s a truly touching novel. Lock and Key is a story of family, love, trust, and finding strength both in yourself and in others. Sarah Dessen is an incredibly talented writer and story teller.

 

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Click on the photos below to get more details on all of Sarah Dessen’s novels!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PUSHING THE LIMITS BY KATIE MCGARRY: BOOK REVIEW

Summary: “I won’t tell anyone, Echo. I promise.” Noah tucked a curl behind my ear. It had been so long since someone touched me like he did. Why did it have to be Noah Hutchins? His dark brown eyes shifted to my covered arms. “You didn’t do that-did you? It was done to you?” No one ever asked that question. They stared. They whispered. They laughed. But they never asked.

So wrong for each other…and yet so right.

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with “freaky” scars on her arms. Even Echo can’t remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal. But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo’s world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.  Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she’ll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again.

Review: Pushing the Limits was one of the most moving novels I’ve ever read. With every turn of the page, it took my breath away.

Pushing the Limits is the story of Echo and Noah. Both characters have had to go through some pretty rough stuff in their lives. They never expected that finding each other would both rock their worlds and steady them at the same time. Do they fix everything for each other? No. Is everything perfect? No. But they find a constant in one another. Even when things aren’t prefect between them and it feels like they are supposed to be apart they are each others steady ground. Echo and Noah’s beauty is in their love, the love for the people they hold closest to them and the pure and honest love they have for each other.

More importantly, Pushing the Limits is a story about discovering yourself. Doing so can be messy and complicated, but if you’re lucky enough to grow and push through the hard times, you’ll come out on the other side of your life stronger and better.

In the end, Echo and Noah didn’t magically have everything figured out. They both still had things to work on and things to accomplish. Their journey in Pushing the Limits was so pure and true. The circumstances may be different, but figuring out who we are, what we are and all the while, hoping to find strength in someone and in yourself like Echo and Noah did is a journey we all go through.

Katie McGarry has written such an honest and hauntingly beautiful novel. Pushing the Limits has become a part of me and it will become a part of you too!

 

Want more from Katie McGarry? Of course you do!

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THE IRON BUTTERFLY BY CHANDA HAHN: BOOK REVIEW

 

Summary: Imprisoned, starved and left with no memories, Thalia awakens to find herself at the mercy of an evil cult  known as the Septori. Their leader has chosen Thalia as the test subject for a torture device of untold power, designed to change and twist her into something that is neither human nor Denai.

Escaping, Thalia finds an unwilling warrior to protect her and an unlikely Denai to befriend her. After finding a home at the Citadel as a servant, Thalia’s worst nightmare comes to life and she begins to show signs of power. Scared and unable to control her gifts, she tries to hide her past to fit in among the Denai. But the Septori want their latest test subject back and will stop at nothing to retrieve her, dead or alive.

 

Review:  After stumbling upon and adoring Chanda Hahn’s UnEnchanted in January, I have been waiting to read more of her work. I didn’t think I could like anything as much UnEnchanted but let me tell you…The Iron Butterfly is a book that will quickly become one of your favorites!

Thalia is a strong and wonderful heroine. There are times where she seems weak and defeated, but her strength lies in her ability to overcome. Even when she’s her weakest…she’s strong. Thalia is a survivor. She may not see it or believe it, but she is.

Along the way, Thalia develops wonderful relationships and deep friendships. Nothing was instant. The strong foundations of her relationships helped her become the survivor she was meant to be.

Throughout The Iron Butterfly Thalia still has no idea who she really is or where she comes from. She only knows the Septori held her prisoner and used her as a test subject for something evil and sinister. She has so many questions with no answers. For every obstacle she overcomes, Thalia is held back because she only knows herself as a prisoner of the Septori and a guest of the Denai. 

Her unlikely friendship with a powerful and determined Denai, Joss, develops into something so much more. Thalia wants to give him her heart but knows that doing so wouldn’t be fair to him until she knows exactly who she is. Thalia and Joss share a deep bond and have very sweet and honest moments. These moments will give readers hope for both Joss and Thalia’s future…whether together or apart.

There’s one particular character that seems to prefer Joss and Thalia be apart. Kael is a SwordBrother and the man that rescues Thalia at every turn. Kael and Thalia prove throughout The Iron Butterfly that there is a fine line between love and hate. What kind of love? I have no idea but something is there. Their encounters are so beautifully described, readers will be able to feel the tension and emotion below the surfaces of both Thalia and Kael.

The ending leaves readers wanting to know more. Needing to know more. I’m a sucker for a happy ending…it gives me hope. Chanda Hahn says “Not all fairy tales have happily ever afters. Some just have afters.” In the case of The Iron Butterfly series, I really hope a happily ever after is in store.

Chanda Hahn is a force to be reckoned with. She created a world so exciting supported by characters that are beautifully developed and deep. You’ll be completely immersed in Thalia’s journey and with every turn, you’ll grow to love The Iron Butterfly and the beginning of Chanda Hahn’s riveting new series.

Chanda Hahn is a refreshing and wonderful addition to the literary world. I believe in her voice. I believe in her writing. I believe she can and will change books. Most importantly, I believe in her and you will too!

 

Want more from Chanda Hahn? YES you do!

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Chanda recently announced that Fairest, the sequel to UnEnchanted, will be have a soft release the first week in June. Yay! She mentioned that it will take a few weeks to get distributed to retailers. Click HERE for all the details. Haven’t read UnEnchanted? Click HERE to read my review then then purchase your copy from Amazon, Barnes and Noble or iBooks TODAY!

 

Haley

 

 

 

A Thank You! to Chanda Hahn

 

Chanda Hahn unknowingly made one of my dreams come true…

When I returned home from my honeymoon I was elated to discover that UnEnchanted was released on paperback. I hurriedly went on amazon to purchased my copy. Yes, I had a copy in my iBooks library but needed another on my shelf at home to stand proudly next to my other favorite books.  After expressing my excitement to Chanda I was informed that I was quoted on the back cover! I couldn’t believe it! I spent the next few hours jumping excitedly around my house and repeatedly asking my husband “Is this real life”.  Tears of joy were shed, family members we called and my heart was completely full. It still is completely full.

It’s taken me a bit of time to sit and write this. I needed to allow this moment in my history to sink in so I could fully express myself and how deeply this has touched me. For a moment, this was mine to cherish and now I’m so happy to share with everyone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chanda,

This is my THANK YOU! You have made my dream come true. This is a moment I will cherish forever, a book I’ll show my children, something I’ll always have and will never forget. You truly are a person and author I’ll always hold dear to my heart. I am so genuinely touched!

Haley

 

Chanda’s new book, The Iron Butterfly, was just released. Make sure you pickup your eBook copy from Amazon, Barnes and Noble and iBooks ASAP. Seriously. Don’t wait! It was such an amazing story! Review coming soon.

Make sure you stay up to date with everything Chanda Hahn on her website and follow her on Twitter.

 

*Photograph is personal and belongs to me.

 

So….What’s New?!?!

 

I got MARRIED….that’s what’s new!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Mister and I spent our wonderful honeymoon cruising in the Bahamas!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I can’t wait to finish writing and post reviews for a few books I’ve read recently! Now, I have a PILE of ARC’s to dive into and too many unread self purchased books to count.

 

Keep your eyes on the blog for the next few days…I have a very exciting post coming soon! I can’t wait to fill you all in.

 

Haley

 

*All photographs are personal and property of myself and our wedding photographer.

 

 

Lissa Price Retweet & Information on Starters!!!

I didn’t think yesterday could get any better. I was wrong! This happened…..

 

 

 

 

 

Lissa Price’s debut novel Starters is set to be released March 13th, 2012 and her e-original short story Portrait of a Starter is set to be released February 14th, 2012!

Summary: HER WORLD IS CHANGED FOREVER

Callie lost her parents when the Spore Wars wiped out everyone between the ages of twenty and sixty. She and her little brother, Tyler, go on the run, living as squatters with their friend Michael and fighting off renegades who would kill them for a cookie. Callie’s only hope is Prime Destinations, a disturbing place in Beverly Hills run by a mysterious figure known as the Old Man.

He hires teens to rent their bodies to Enders—seniors who want to be young again. Callie, desperate for the money that will keep her, Tyler, and Michael alive, agrees to be a donor. But the neurochip they place in Callie’s head malfunctions and she wakes up in the life of her renter, living in her mansion, driving her cars, and going out with a senator’s grandson. It feels almost like a fairy tale, until Callie discovers that her renter intends to do more than party—and that Prime Destinations’ plans are more evil than Callie could ever  have imagined. . .

 

Starters seems like it will be an intriguing read! I love seeing such originality from a debut author.  I’m really looking forward to the release.

 

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Megan Miranda Retweet and Twitter Reply!!!

This has been the brightest spot of my day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you, Megan! I’m beyond words…just WOW!

Want more from Megan Miranda?!? Yes! Yes you do!

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FRACTURE BY MEGAN MIRANDA: BOOK REVIEW

Summary: Eleven minutes passed before Delaney Maxwell was pulled from the icy waters of a Maine lake by her best friend Decker Phillips. By then her heart had stopped beating. Her brain had stopped working. She was dead. And yet she somehow defied medical precedent to come back seemingly fine

—despite the scans that showed significant brain damage. Everyone wants Delaney to be all right, but she knows she’s far from normal. Pulled by strange sensations she can’t control or explain, Delaney finds herself drawn to the dying. Is her altered brain now predicting death, or causing it?

Then Delaney meets Troy Varga, who recently emerged from a coma with similar abilities. At first she’s reassured to find someone who understands the strangeness of her new existence, but Delaney soon discovers that Troy’s motives aren’t quite what she thought. Is their gift a miracle, a freak of nature-or something much more frightening?

For fans of best-sellers like Before I Fall and If I Stay, this is a fascinating and heart-rending story about love and friendship and the fine line between life and death.

Review: I have to admit that the cover of Fracture immediately drew me in. I’m a sucker for a beautiful and unique book cover but the story held my attention for hours. I couldn’t put Fracture down! It may seem hard to believe but the story Megan Miranda created is even more beautiful than its cover.

Fracture was above and beyond anything I could’ve expected. With such an original storyline and how beautifully it’s written, readers will find it hard to concentrate on anything other than Delaney’s story. There were many occasions I felt like I was drowning along with her. With every turn of a page I was flooded with emotions.

I love the relationship between Delaney and Decker! There were times while reading Fracture that I wanted to slap both of them. Hard! Somewhere deep down I knew they would figure everything out. Decker almost lost his best friend, the girl he’s known his entire life, the girl that died when he left her alone on the lake, the girl he saved, the girl he loves. Delaney lost her life for eleven minutes and even after returning after six days in a coma still felt her as if life was gone and she’d never be the same.

She wouldn’t be. How could she be?

“Truth is, I don’t know. I don’t know… what I’m doing. Or why I’m doing it,” he said. Which was the worst excuse in the history of excuses. “I don’t know what’s up or down anymore. I feel like I’m…” He stopped speaking and winced. “Drowning,” I said. “You were going to say you feel like you’re drowning.” He nodded. I wonder how many people I took with me when I feel into the lake. How many sunk with me. I thought I had been alone under the water, but maybe I wasn’t.”

Troy was a character I found myself liking and hating at the same time. Maybe it’s because his story was so tragic? Maybe I felt sorry for him? Maybe, like Delaney’s mom, I just felt a need to hug him? Regardless, after everything was said and done….I liked him. I didn’t want to like him. I didn’t like the way he treated Delaney but I did think he was coping with his situation the only way he knew how.

In the end, Delaney made the best of her situation too. Readers are left knowing that she still has a long way to go but she’ll be OK. She’ll always be OK!

“I hadn’t known that a light could be a feeling and a sound could be a color and a kiss could be both a question and an answer. And that heaven could be the ocean or a person or this moment or something else entirely.”

 

If you only had one day to live, what would you do?

 

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